Earlier this year, chipmaker Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) hosted what it called a "Technology and Manufacturing Day." At this event, the company went into quite a lot of detail about its various chip manufacturing technologies, and their applicability across the company's different business units.
This was an exceptionally informative presentation, and I both applaud Intel for hosting it, and hope that the company continues to regularly update the investment community on its advances in manufacturing technology.
In the spirit of this event, I think Intel should do something similar with respect to its chip designs called an "Intel Architecture Day."
Tell us about your vision for the future, Intel
Chip manufacturing technology is an important part of what makes Intel's products as competitive as they are in the marketplace. And, of course, Intel's robust factory network allows it to be a reliable supplier of hundreds of millions of complex chips to its customers each year.
However, Intel doesn't sell chip manufacturing technology to its customers; it uses that technology to craft products that its customers (personal computer vendors, data center operators, and so on) want to buy.
A typical Intel processor incorporates a host of different individual technologies, commonly referred to as "intellectual properties." Intel's seventh-generation Core processors for personal computers, for example, include the following technologies (though this list is by no means exhaustive):
- CPU cores
- Graphics, media, and display engines
- Image signal processors
- Memory controller
- Sensor hub
- Wired connectivity (wireless connectivity should be integrated in the future)
I think that Intel could drum up excitement for its long-term business prospects if it gives a bold, vibrant vision for where it plans to take its current product portfolio (PC processors, Xeon processors, and so on).
And, to be blunt, it wouldn't hurt for Intel to talk about why it expects to extend/maintain/attain leadership across these various technological vectors.
Furthermore, as Intel seems to be investing in more specialized technologies to attack certain markets (e.g. buying Mobileye (NYSE:MBLY) for autonomous driving, nabbing Altera for its FPGA technology to improve its data center and Internet of Things offerings, and scooping up Nervana to power its machine learning efforts), I think it'd be useful for Intel to go into more depth into these technologies and provide roadmaps indicating what the future for these technologies hold.
In addition to talking about its vision for various technologies and market segments, Intel could also give investors a peek at its investment levels and trends in certain areas. What technology is Intel investing in? What areas is it cutting its investments back in? Where does Intel think its investment levels are currently appropriate?
There's really a lot that Intel can talk about. The problem certainly wouldn't be trying to figure out how to come up with approximately three hours of material, but instead the challenge would likely be to try to pick the right subset of topics to keep the day's presentations from running too long.